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Fresh demonstration in Algiers against Bouteflika’s fifth term bid

Fresh demonstration in Algiers against Bouteflika’s fifth term bid


Hundreds of people on Sunday demonstrated in the Algerian capital against President Abdelaziz Bouteflika’s bid for a fifth term.

Police sprayed tear gas, brought in a water cannon and rounded up several people as shops were closed in Algiers.

But turnout was much lower than on Friday when tens of thousands took to the streets including in Algiers, where demonstrations are strictly banned.

“The alternative is for the people to choose their leaders sovereignly. Algerians have the right, it is not a sub-population, it is not a colonized people, it is a people who must be free to make their own choices, it is up to them to choose their leaders,” said Soufiane Djilali, president, Jil Jadid party.

“Even if the government does not understand it, the people have now made their choice definitively, and we will continue to fight peacefully to say that the government must leave, and that we want to build a state of law in a calm environment,” said Zoubida Assoul, President, Union for Change and Progress Party

Sunday’s rally came in response to calls posted by anonymous users on social media.

Security forces, deployed since the early hours of the morning and backed by a police helicopter, evacuated the central square, prompting the demonstrators to head elsewhere.

President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, who uses a wheelchair and has rarely been seen in public since suffering a stroke in 2013, announced on February 10 that he will run for another term in office.


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